Did you know your company needs a nurse in the Philippines?

pablo (21)We recently spoke to Nick Sinclair from the Outsourced Accountant. When we asked him about roadblocks to setting up a business in the Philippines, he mentioned some requirements that were unclear to him. One of them was about hiring company nurses for businesses that employ over a certain number of people.

We decided to look into it and try to clear up what the requirements are on company nurses. The Department of Labor and Employment has a list of rules under the Occupational Safety and Health Standards that says that companies need to allocate manpower in order to cater to injuries and prevent diseases from spreading in the workplace. Companies need to have a Health and Safety Committee. The Committee comprises 8 or more people based on the size of the company.

The Health and Safety Committee can be categorized into 4 types with the following composition:

Type A: Companies with over 400 workers

  • Chairman: Top operating official (manager)
  • Members:
    • Two department heads
    • Four workers (union members)
    • The company physician
  • Secretary: The safety man

Type B: Companies having between 200 and 400 workers

  • Chairman: Top operating official (manager)
  • Members:
    • One supervisor
    • Three workers (union members)
    • Company physician or company nurse
  • Secretary: The safety man

Type C: Companies having between 100 and 200 workers

  • Chairman: Manager or his representative
  • Members:
    • One foreman
    • Three workers (union members)
    • Company nurse
  • Secretary: Part-time safety man

Type D: Companies with fewer than 100 workers

  • Chairman: Manager
  • Members:
    • One foreman
    • Three workers (union members)
    • Company nurse (first aider)
  • Secretary: Part-time safety man

The list above covers the minimum number of members in a committee. Companies may choose to have more members in their Health and Safety Committee.

In the Philippines, registered nurses are not hard to find. Nurses face a problem of excess supply and weak demand which is why it is hard for them to find employment in hospitals. They often work as company nurses to gain some experience before moving on to hospitals. Registered nurses can be found through regular job boards. The average salary of a registered nurse is PHP 121,651 per year. (approx. $2700USD)

In addition to following the basic requirements under the Department of Labor and Employment, having a nurse is useful in bringing down healthcare costs for the company. According to the American Association of Occupational Health Nurses, employing a company nurse can bring down costs of injury and illness by up to 40%. With a nurse in the premises, employees must get their illnesses checked before they can take leave, which also reduces the propensity of fraud.

Disclaimer: As always, consult your lawyer or accountant for advice! We are here to help, but your specific situation should be reviewed by a professional with complete knowledge of your situation.

Special Employment Credits in Singapore

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The Special Employment Credit was introduced in 2011 in order to provide tax credits for employers who employ low-wage Singaporean senior citizens. The time period in which the SEC is implemented is between January 1, 2012 and December 31, 2016. The last SEC payout will be on March 2017.

There are three main criteria in order to apply for the SEC. The employee must be:

  1. a Singaporean citizen
  2. aged over 50
  3. earning less that $4000 a month

In the year 2015, the Government decided to increase credit rates in order for companies to cope with the increase in CPF contributions. Credit offered by the government is 8.5% of the employee’s monthly wages for employees aged between 50 and 65. For employees over 65 years of age, the credit is 11.5% of monthly wages. These rates apply till December 31, 2015. The schedule for credit is given below:

SEC for the month ($) for employers who hire Singaporeans
Income of employee/month ($) between ages 50 and 65 over age 65
500.00 42.50 57.50
1000.00 85.00 115.00
1500.00 127.50 172.50
2000.00 170.00 230.00
2500.00 212.50 287.50
3000.00 255.00 345.00
3250.00 191.25 258.75
3500.00 127.50 172.50
3750.00 63.75 86.25
>= 4000 0.00 0.00

The rates for 2016 have not been announced. The Singapore government has not specified whether these rates will remain or be reverted back to the old credit rates.

SEC Payments

SEC payments are made on a retrospective basis. For the months between January and June, SEC payments will be made in September. For months between July and December, SEC payments are made the following March. A company will qualify for SEC payments only after the necessary CPF contributions have been made. To check the contribution schedule for CPF and for more details on CPF payments, check out our blog post. Payments are made via GIRO. For companies without GIRO, a cheque will be sent. An important point to note that SEC is taxable.

To find out the absolute value of credit that your company will receive, you can click on the SEC calculator here. For more details on SEC, you can find FAQs here.

Foreign Worker Levy in Singapore: Changes to the Levy From July 2015

Singapore Foreign Worker LevyThe Ministry of Manpower in Singapore has implemented a quota on the total number of foreign employees that you can hire. If your company exceeds the quota, you will have to reorganize your workforce in order to meet the requirements. You can find out what is your company’s quota on foreign employees here.

In addition to the quota, the foreign worker’s levy applies to any company that employs foreigners with Work Permits. The quota depends on the industry. From July 2016 the rates for the levy will change. Here is the complete schedule of foreign worker levy changes. The levy needs to be paid via GIRO on the 17th of the next month. In case your company is still in the process of applying for GIRO, you may pay by other methods by the 14th of the next month. Here are the details for paying the levy.

This is the schedule for the services sector:

S Pass
Tier Sector Dependency Ratio (DR) Current Levy Rates ($) New Levy Rates ($) From July 1 2016
Basic Tier <10% 315 330
Tier 2 (Services) 10-15% 550 650
Tier 2 (Other Sectors) 10-20%
Work Permit
Tier Sector Dependency Ratio (DR) Current Levy Rates ($) (R1/R2) New Levy Rates ($) (R1/R2) From July 1 2016
Basic Tier <10% 300/420 300/420
Tier 2 (Services) 10-25% 400/550 400/550
Tier 2 (Other Sectors) 25-40% 600/700 600/700

The Skilled Workers’ Levy rates are lower than regular foreign workers’ levy. It applies for workers who have years of experience and meet the academic qualifications specified by the Ministry of Manpower. The forms and requirements for applying for the skilled workers’ levy are posted here.

Do note that there are certain work permit requirements that the MoM has posted. In addition to the regular requirements, foreign workers in the retail and F&B sector need to obtain level 4 of the Workplace Literacy listening and speaking assessments conducted by the Workforce Development Agency (WDA). You can register for the assessments through the CES online booking portal.

Customer Happiness Tools – Being Ridiculously Client Focused

Customer happiness is essential to everything we do at PayrollHero. One of our favourite catchphrases is “ridiculously client focused”, which means that we want to devote our resources towards making our clients happy. Everything else is secondary. And we aren’t the only ones with that perspective.

Over the last week, the PayrollHero team has been traveling all over the world. While spending an unnatural amount of your time in airports, you can’t help but notice the little things that pique your interest. The pictures that you see are from the London and Dublin airports, where customer feedback stations have been installed. Whether the feedback is about security, bathroom cleanliness (as in the case of Singapore’s Changi airport) or customer service, the idea behind these tools is to ensure that the customer experiences the best that we have to offer.

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Dublin Airport Security Feedback

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London Airport Security Feedback

The customer feedback tool can be extended to any service. Restaurants, retail stores, bathrooms, anything that involves customer interaction. With data analytics, you can do more than just find out how your outlet is performing. You can reward those who make it happen.

In that vein, PayrollHero created the TeamClock customer feedback tool. Imagine this: the sports apparel retail store you own is visited by a customer five minutes before it is time to shut down. While any other employee would request the customer to return the next day, this employee – let’s name him Bob – decided to let the customer in. Over the next 30 minutes, the customer went through your store and made the biggest purchase of the week, while Bob patiently helped him. While walking out, the customer spent a few seconds on the iPad sitting on your counter, typing out comments about the best customer service he has ever received.

Using the Xray Insights app, you noticed that a particular outlet received excellent customer feedback. With a closer look, you realized that the same employee – Bob – has been consistent with winning awesome feedback from customers. Not only do you have information about how well that outlet is doing, you also know who has contributed towards that outlet’s success.

This makes for an easy and efficient way to reward reliable employees. With data to back you up on how capable your employees are, you can make decisions on whom to promote, to manage other staff or simply reward at the end of the week. This approach allows your employees to be ridiculously client focused as well.

So this is what we have been working on at PayrollHero. The customer feedback tool is currently in beta stage. We will keep you posted with updates and changes that we introduce to the app. Till then, we hope the feedback you are receiving helps you identify the Bobs that make your outlet ridiculously client focused.

Want to get the PayrollHero Customer Feedback tool for your business? Reach out to us today and we would be pleased to speak further about how we can get your establishment setup to gather real time data.

Certified Profile: Clare Matchett, ServiceSeeking Manila

As part of a new series on this blog we will be profiling certified PayrollHero users to learn more about them, their business, where they go to learn and best practices. 

First up is Clare Matchett, General Manager for ServiceSeeking Manila.
Clare Matchett, SeekingService Manila, General Manager

1. How would you describe your business? 
ServiceSeeking Manila is the Manila arm of ServiceSeeking.com.au, Australia’s best way to get free quotes from local businesses. Our team handles customer service, sales, data analysis, web development, SEO and a whole lot more.


2. What tools do you use to recruit?
We use traditional recruiting tools like job websites, forums and events. One of the most successful recruitment channels is actually referrals from existing team members. Some of our best staff were encouraged to apply by friends and family who worked with us and loved the company culture and office atmosphere.

3. What is your hiring philosophy? 
We look closely at applicants’ personality and general aptitude and tend to place more emphasis on this than skills, education and past experience in our industry. If someone is the right fit, they’ll have the curiosity, bubbliness and problem solving ability that helps them thrive in a company that moves quickly and believes in collaboration, openness and fun.

4. What blogs / newsletters do you read to stay up to date in your industry?
My favourite newsletter is from Sandler Training, a sales training company with a no nonsense approach to prospecting and winning and keeping clients.

5. How do you build company culture at ServiceSeeking? 
We emphasise our company values and make these a core part of recruitment, training and annual reviews. Weekly wrap ups with the entire office also let everyone know what others are working on, celebrate the small “wins” and help team members see the importance of their own role in our big picture success.

6. I saw on Linkedin you were “Streamlining HR policies and the recruitment process” can you explain more about that?  
We’ve learned over the years that being different to the average big BPO company is a key factor in our success in Manila. We’ve worked hard to cut out policies and processes that are not in line with our values and can hold our team back from delivering great quality service.

7. Is speaking Tagalog an advantage to you in running the business? 
My tagalog has a long way to go, but I do think employees appreciate when a foreigner takes the time to learn! It has certainly helped me understand more about Philippine culture, and it always gets a smile when I drop a word into the conversation, even with the wrong pronunciation.

8. Regarding the PayrollHero Certifications, what did you think of the certification courses? 
I was very impressed with the certification courses PayrollHero and its training partners provide. We were helped along every step of the way and the support made the transition from outsourced payroll provider to running this in-house much more smooth.

9. Was the certifications helpful in getting the most out of PayrollHero?

Much of the software is intuitive and just “makes sense”, but payroll in the Philippines is notoriously complicated. We’ve been able to transition to using PayrollHero without adding any new team members and this is mostly because of the great communication with the PayrollHero staff. Discrepancy checks were particularly helpful in letting us know where we’re at with the transition and how to set up loans, advances, bonuses, allowances and government contributions correctly.


PayrollHero has a deliberate onboarding process that is designed to understand every customer’s unique needs so that we can quickly and effectively transition your business onto PayrollHero. Reach out today for a free, 30 min. one on one conversation about how PayrollHero can work within your organization.

Payroll in APAC: Singapore

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Employer contributions in Singapore are collected by the Central Provident Fund (CPF). The deductions and levies contribute towards savings for Singaporeans and Permanent Residents (PRs) for retirement, insurance and building their homes. There are also certain levies that go towards different ethnic funds. We will go through all these deductions and levies.

CPF

CPF contributions are done by the employee and employer. The contributions arsingapore cpfe restricted to Singaporeans and PRs only. There are 4 major accounts that CPF contributions go into: Ordinary Account (for retirement, housing finance, investment, education), Special Account (for old age and special contingencies), Medisave Account (for hospital bills) and Retirement Account (this account is opened once the employee turns 55). Check out these links to find out contributions rates and deadlines.

Foreign Workers Levy

The levy is imposed on employers who employ foreign workers with Work Permits or S Passes. Levies do not need to be paid for employees with Employment Passes. The levy is calculated based on the ratio of Singaporeans to foreign employees that your business employs. Here is a link on how the foreign levy is calculated. The levy is paid on the first of every month. More details on the FWL here.

Skills Development Levy

The SDL goes to the Skills Development Fund, which provides grants for training programmes and workforce upgrading programmes. The levy must be paid for Singpaorean, PR and foreign workers. The rates are linked here.

Ethnic Fund

There are 4 Self Help Group (SGH) Funds that collect levies based on the ethnicity of your employees. The four funds are:

  1. Chinese Development Assistance Council (CDAC) Fund, administered byCDAC
  2. Eurasian Community Fund (ECF), administered by the Eurasian Association(EA)
  3. Mosque Building and Mendaki Fund (MBMF), administered by Majlis Ugama Islam Singapura (MUIS)
  4. Singapore Indian Development Association (SINDA) Fund, administered by SINDA

The levy is paid out of employees’ salaries. Employees may choose to opt out of the levy by signing the relevant forms. The levy must be paid every month. Here are the rates.

If you are looking for a Singapore cloud based payroll platform – look no further. PayrollHero’s end to end solution includes time, attendance, scheduling, HRIS and Singapore payroll. Plus, amazing business intelligence. Let us know if you want a one on one demo.

For more information on CPF contributions, make sure to read this link. If you want to know more about employer contribution in the Philippine, check out Payroll in APAC: the Philippines.. Hope this helps!

Disclaimer: As always, consult your lawyer or accountant for advice! We are here to help, but your specific situation should be reviewed by a professional with complete knowledge of your situation.

Payroll in APAC: The Philippines

The Payroll in APAC blog posts are (as you might have guessed), a series of blog posts on tax and employer contribution laws in APAC nations. This gives payroll and human resource administrators a high level understanding on what you should know in these countries. Our first post is on the Philippines.

Creditable and Final Withholding Taxes:

The Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) is the Philippine equivalent of the IRS in the United States. Companies are required to withhold taxes from employees who are subject to income tax. They are then required to remit these taxes to the BIR.

There are two broad classifications of withholding taxes: Creditable withholding taxes and final withholding taxes. Creditable withholding taxes apply for certain income payments and are creditable against income tax. On the other hand, Final Withholding Taxes are not creditable against withholding taxes. Unlike the former, final withholding taxes are prescribed on royalties and interest incomes.

Social Security Service (SSS)

The SSS is the social security net for Filipinos. It covers a list of contingencies: from disabilities to maternity. All private companies are required to register with the SSS and deduct contributions for their employees. Around 70% of the contribution comes from the employer and 30% from the employee.

Deductions are made from the employee’s salary and remitted to the SSS. Payments are done monthly or quarterly, based on the type of employee. The summary on benefits and schedule on payments is posted here.

PhilHealth

The health insurance institution in the Philippines is called PhilHealth. All private and government institutions are required to register and deduct contributions from their employees’ salaries. PhilHealth covers a number of benefits. The share of the contribution is split between the employer and the employee. The payment dates and contribution schedule are available here.

Pag-IBIG – Home Development Mutual Fund

The final contribution that employers need to be aware of is Pag-IBIG. This institution provides housing finance for Filipinos. Contributions by the employer are equal to 2% of the employee’s salary. The dates for payment are in this link.

These are the 4 major tax and employer contribution laws that Payroll and Human Resource administrators should be aware of. At PayrollHero, we deduct the required contributions and generate payroll for our clients. Here are examples of how we compute BIR taxes, SSS, PhilHealth and Pag-IBIG contributions.

For more information on BIR, SSS, PhilHealth and Pag-IBIG with respect to what forms need to be filled and filing deadlines, make sure to click on the links!

Disclaimer: As always, consult your lawyer or accountant for advice! We are here to help, but your specific situation should be reviewed by a professional with complete knowledge of your situation.

If you are in need of a payroll provider in the Philippines that can provide an end to end solution, then let us know. PayrollHero’s Philippine cloud based payroll platform incorporates, time, attendance, scheduling, HRIS, business intelligence and Philippine payroll in one, easy to use solution.
Cloud Payroll Software for Philippines

Part III: Employer Contributions in the Philippines: Home Development Mutual Fund (Pag-IBIG)

This is the final iteration of the ‘Employer Contributions in the Philippines’ set of blog posts. So far, we have given you an overview of the BIR, the SSS and PhilHealth. We will now talk about the Home Development Mutual Fund – popularly known as Pag-IBIG Fund. The fund is the biggest source of housing finance in the Philippines. Along with the SSS and PhilHealth, employers also need to register to Pag-IBIG.

Requirements: Before you register your business with Pag-IBIG, you will need the following:

  1. Employer’s Data Form (make sure you have a TIN and your SSS employer number to fill the form)
  2. Specimen Signature Form (SSF [HQP-PFF-003])
  3. SSS certification
  4. Proof of business existence (Business permit/ Mayor permit)

You need to fill these forms and take them to the nearest Pag-IBIG service center. After the documents are processed, you will receive the Pag-IBIG Employer ID.

The following is the contribution that is required by the employer and employee

The Pag-IBIG registration process can be done online as well. After deductions, payment to the fund can be done online or through one of the accredited banks.

Employee Share Employer Share
PHP 1,500.00 and below 1% 2%
Over PHP 1,500.00 2% 2%

Finally, here we have an example on how PayrollHero calculates Pag-IBIG deductions.

This marks the end of our 3 part blogpost on Employer Contributions in the Philippines. For details on BIR, SSS and PhilHealth, click on the links. To see how PayrollHero calculates deductions on BIR, SSS and PhilHealth, make sure to click on the links.

Here is a helpful video from our friends at ZipMatch.com about Pag-IBIG

Disclaimer: As always, consult your lawyer or accountant for advice! We are here to help, but your specific situation should be reviewed by a professional with complete knowledge of your situation.

If you are interested in learning more about PayrollHero for your Philippine business, check out our website at PayrollHero.ph. We would be pleased to chat further about your needs.

Part II: Employer Contributions in the Philippines: PhilHealth

Philippines PhilHealthOur previous post was an introduction to employer contributions in the Philippines with a closer look on BIR and the SSS. In this post, we’ll give you an idea about how health insurance works in the Philippines. PhilHealth is the health insurance institution that all private and government companies are required to register their new employees to. Here is a list of benefits that PhilHealth covers. Unlike the SSS, the employer’s share towards insurance is equal to the employee’s share towards insurance. The contribution schedule is available here.

Step 1: Employers need to first register their business through the Philippines Business Directory.

Step 2: All employees must submit the PhilHealth Member Registration Form (PMRF) to the HR department. Once that is done, you need to register your employees by filling out Employee Data Record (ER1) Form and submit the ER1 Form with the PMRF for each employee.

Step 3: After the forms are processed, companies will be given the following:

  1. PhilHealth Employment Number (PEN)
  2. Certificate of Registration
  3. PhilHealth Identification Number (PIN)
  4. Member Data Record (MDR) of registered employees.

The Certificate of Registration is required to be displayed clearly in your business’s offices.

Step 4: After deducting employer and employee contributions from the basic monthly salary, payment must be made to PhilHealth or via Accredited Collecting Agents. The payment should be made on or before the due date. The table below is from the PhilHealth website:

Employers with PENs ending in 0-4 Every 11th-15th day of the month following the applicable period
Employers with PENs ending in 5-9 Every 16th-20th day of the month following the applicable period

Step 5: Once the payment is done, you will have to report it within 5 days with the revised RF-1 Form. Alternatively, you can report it online using the Electronic Premium Reporting System

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Additional Info:

For new employees in the company, you will have to file the ER2 form to ensure that they are covered by PhilHealth too. Make sure to ask them if the have their PIN so that you can add it to the ER2 form. The form should be submitted to PhilHealth within 30 days of the new employees coming into office. For separated employees, Form RF1 must be filled and submitted within 30 days of the employee leaving. To amend employer data, ER3 form must be filed along with supporting documents.

This is it for PhilHealth. For reference, here is how PayrollHero calculates PhilHealth deductions. Check out Part III of our posts on employee contributions. We give you a crash course on Pag-IBIG deductions.

Disclaimer: As always, consult your lawyer or accountant for advice! We are here to help, but your specific situation should be reviewed by a professional with complete knowledge of your situation.

If you are interested in learning more about PayrollHero for your Philippine business, check out our website at PayrollHero.ph or contact us at sales@payrollhero.com. We would be pleased to chat further about your needs!

Part I: Employee Contributions in the Philippines: BIR and SSS

As an HR admin or payroll admin, it is important to understand how employee contributions work for the social security nets that are in place for Filipinos. There are 4 institutions that you should know about for employee contributions:

  1. Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR)
  2. Social Security System (SSS)
  3. Philhealth
  4. Home Development Mutual Fund

We will be talking about each of these over the next few blog posts. Let’s start with the first:

Bureau of Internal Revenue

When you are employing someone in the Philippines, the first requirement is to have a Tax Identification Number (TIN) that is registered in the same Revenue District Office (RDO) as your business. The TIN is essential in order to process employee contributions.

  • If the employee does not have a TIN, she must file form 1902 at the RDO where your business is registered.
  • If the employee does have a TIN but is not registered in the same RDO as your business, then she must fill form 1905 and file it at the RDO where her previous employee was registered in order to cancel it.
  • If the employee has a TIN registered at the same RDO as your company’s, then you will have to file form 2305 at the same RDO to update your employee’s information.

Here are all the BIR forms for your convenience.

Social Security Service

All employees in private companies across the country are required to be SSS members. The social security net covers a range of contingencies such as disability, sickness, retirement. Here is a summary of contingencies that the SSS covers. Around 70% of the contribution towards the SSS is made by the employer while 30% is made by the employee. Here is a schedule of contributions based on monthly salary.

First, you need to register your company as an employer in the nearest SSS office by filing Form R1. Along with this, you need to submit a list of employees with their SSS numbers. Note that private companies can only hire employees with SSS numbers. The form that needs to be files is Form R1A. The last form that needs to be submitted is the Specimen Signature Card SS Form L501. With these 3 forms, you will have to submit a sketch of your business address.

You will also have to pay a fee of PHP 160 for an Employer Registration Plate at the SSS or any SSS accredited bank. The list of accredited banks are here (at the bottom of the document). Along with the payment, you need to submit validated Miscellaneous Payment Return – SS Form R6 along with a Special Bank Receipt with this form.

You need to submit Form R1A – the Employment Report – every time a new employee joins. It must be filed within thirty days of the employee receiving the benefits of the coverage. The form must be submitted with the Specimen Signature Card and the 13 digit ER number and business address.

If there are changes to business operations, you need to file an Employer Data Change Request. This way, you will be billed correctly by the SSS.Singapore Payroll

Now that you know what these institutions are and what forms need to be filled, here is our example on how SSS contributions are calculated using PayrollHero software. As a bonus, we also have an example on how BIR taxes are computed.

That’s it for now! Check out our next few posts on Philhealth and Home Development Mutual Fund to find out everything you need to know about employer contributions.

Disclaimer: As always, consult your lawyer or accountant for advice! We are here to help, but your specific situation should be reviewed by a professional with complete knowledge of your situation. 


If you are interested in learning more about PayrollHero for your Philippine business, check out our website at PayrollHero.ph. We would be pleased to chat further about your needs.
Cloud Payroll Software for Philippines